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Troubleshoot your Xbox 360 controller for Windows


Make sure your system meet the requirements for the Xbox 360 Controller for Windows

  • What version of Windows are you using?
    The Xbox 360 Controller for Windows is designed to work on Windows XP with Service Pack 2 (SP2) and later versions of Windows.
    Has the controller software been installed?
    Make sure that the controller software has been installed. The controller requires a driver to work on a Windows-based PC. A disc that contains the driver is included with the controller. You can also download the driver from the Microsoft Hardware website.

Note A driver is a software program that lets the device—in this case the Xbox 360 Controller for Windows—work with the Windows operating system and the game.

Note On a computer that is running Windows 7, the driver will be downloaded and installed automatically when you connect the controller. In Windows 8, the driver is included as part of the operating system.

Update your controller’s device drivers

You can download the latest drivers for the Xbox 360 controller for Windows from the Software Downloads section of the Microsoft Hardware website. You should also download and install any critical or important updates to Windows by running Windows Update.

USB port troubleshooting

The Xbox 360 Controller for Windows needs a powered USB port. If the controller is not working correctly, try changing the controller to a different USB port. Avoid using USB hubs or the front ports on a PC. Unpowered hubs or ports might not provide enough power for the controller. For best results, plug the controller into another USB port on the back of the computer.

Typically, the ports on the back of a computer are powered ports. Ports on the front of the computer may not be powered ports. An external USB hub doesn’t provide powered ports if it doesn’t have its own separate power supply or AC adapter.

Troubleshoot any problems

Note For information about how to install the Xbox 360 controller for Windows, see Set up your Xbox 360 controller for Windows.

Windows 8

On a computer that is running Windows 8, you can use the Devices and Printers item to troubleshoot the controller. Here’s how:

  1. On the Start screen, click Control Panel.
  2. Click View Devices and Printers.
  3. Verify that the controller appears under Devices, and then right-click the controller, and click Game controller settings.
  4. Check the Status of the controller, and then click Properties.
  5. On the Test tab, test that the controller works correctly. If there are any issues, click Calibrate on the Settings tab.
  6. If you continue to experience any issues, right-click the controller under Devices in Devices and Printers, and then click Troubleshoot.

Windows 7 and earlier versions of Windows

On Windows 7 and earlier versions of Windows, you can use Device Manager to help troubleshoot problems with your controller. You can use Device Manager to see whether the correct items are listed and to make sure that there are no conflicts.

Note A conflict is marked by a yellow exclamation point in Device Manager.

To use Device Manager, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, click Run, type sysdm.cpl, and then click OK.
  2. On the Hardware tab, click Device Manager.
  3. When the controller is successfully installed, you see three entries in Device Manager. There should be two entries under Human Interface Devices:
    • HID-compliant game controller
    • USB Human Interface Device
    Additionally, there should be a third entry in under Microsoft Common Controller for Windows Class:
    • Xbox 360 Controller for Windows
  4. If you see yellow exclamation points next to any of these entries, there is a problem with the installation. If there is a problem for either of the entries under Human Interface Devices, first verify that the problem is caused by the controller by unplugging the controller. If a hardware conflict with the controller was causing the problem, the yellow exclamation point will no longer appear after the controller is unplugged.

To resolve controller problems in Device Manager, try these solutions one at a time (move to the next solution only if the solution you’re trying fails to resolve your problem):

  1. Use the built-in troubleshooter:
    1. In Device Manager, double-click Xbox 360 Controller for Windows.
    2. Click Troubleshoot, and then follow the steps provided.
  2. Remove and then redetect the controller:
    1. Right-click Xbox 360 Controller for Windows, and then click Uninstall.
    2. In the Action menu, click Scan for hardware changes.
  3. Try updating the driver:
    1. Double-click XBOX 360 Controller for Windows.
    2. On the Driver tab, click Update Driver.

Note This information applies only to the Xbox 360 controller for Windows. For help with other gamepads or joysticks, see the peripheral manufacturer's website or support center. For information on configuring a specific game to be played with a controller, see the game publisher's website or support center.

Test the controller on an Xbox 360 console

To help eliminate any possible hardware issues, try to use the controller on an Xbox 360 console.

If you still experience the problem, contact Xbox Support by clicking the “Contact us” link at the bottom of this page.

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